Plaice with tartare sauce

  • serves 4

Plaice is a lovely light, delicate fish which just needs gentle cooking. Serve it with this punchy tartare sauce, packed full of gherkins, parsley, capers and shallots in a homemade mayo.



  • whole plaice 1 about 1.5kg, gutted (if you can’t get large plaice use two smaller)
  • butter 25g, plus extra for the tin
  • lemon wedges to serve

tartare sauce

  • egg yolks 2
  • garlic 1 small clove, peeled and roughly chopped
  • Dijon mustard 1 heaped tsp
  • flaked sea salt ½ tsp
  • golden caster sugar ½ tsp
  • tarragon vinegar 2 tbsp
  • sunflower or oil 200ml
  • shallot 1 small, peeled and finely chopped
  • gherkins 6, drained and chopped
  • parsley a small bunch, finely chopped
  • dill a small bunch, finely chopped
  • baby capers 5 tbsp
  • single cream 2-3 tbsp


  • Step 1

    To make the tartare sauce put the egg yolks, garlic, mustard, salt, 2-3 twists of black pepper, the sugar and vinegar in a food processor or blender and blitz until well combined. With the motor running, slowly add the oil in a thin stream until you have a thick, creamy sauce. Scrape into a bowl.

  • Step 2

    Mix the shallot, gherkins, parsley and dill into the sauce, along with the whole baby capers. Add just enough cream to loosen the mixture a little. It should be a soft, dropping sauce that slides slowly from the spoon as it is lifted from the bowl.

  • Step 3

    To cook the fish, heat the oven to 220c/fan 200c/gas 7. Butter a large baking tray or shallow ovenproof dish and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Put the fish on the tray, white side down. dot the spotty side with more butter and season well.

  • Step 4

    Put in the centre of the oven and bake for 12-14 minutes or until the fish is just cooked and lightly browned. The flesh behind the head should show only faint resistance when a knife is pushed to the bone.

  • Step 5

    Take two fillets from each side with two table knives (lifting the skin off first if you prefer) and serve with dollops of tartare sauce and lemon wedges.

Nutritional Information

  • Kcals 685
  • Carbs 2.1g
  • Protein 35.5g
  • Fat 59.5g
  • Salt 2.74g
  • Fibre 0.7g